After hearing concerns from the public, the developers of a proposed luxury Patchogue apartment complex called The Cornerstone went back to the drawing board.
The developers, Terwilliger and Bartone Properties, shared the new designs at Tuesday’s Planning Board Meeting. Because of the interest in the project, the meeting was moved to South Ocean Middle School, which was filled residents, the overwhelming majority of whom decried the project.
The site for the planned 50-apartment waterside building sits between the Watch Hill Ferry Terminal and The Oar Steak & Seafood Grille on the corner of West Avenue and Mulford Street.
“This is the third major re-work of the project in response to the community input,” said the developers’ attorney, Kathleen Deegan Dickson. “We’ve taken notice of the concerns expressed [at prior meetings in Village Hall], expressed on social media and among local civic groups … ”
Major changes were presented at Tuesday night’s Planning Board meeting, which started at 7:30 p.m. and ran until almost 1 a.m.
For one, the building would run east-west, instead of north-south.
The developers are also no longer seeking to purchase the end of Mulford Street, meaning there are no longer any plans to build infrastructure over Mulford Street. Instead, the north side of the property would be used for parking space, a marina building, as well as a brick promenade along the waterfront.
“Public access [on Mulford Street] will continue as it has always been, but it will be better, prettier and safer,” said Dickson.
Among other concerns presented to the Planning Board, and among board members, at a prior meeting on Jan. 22 was of the building’s not meshing well with the neighborhood’s character.
“The building has been redesigned to match the neighborhood’s historical charm,” said the project’s architect, Glen Cherveny from GRCH Architecture (see photo below.)
During the meeting, the Planning Board informed the community the purpose of the gathering was to learn more information about the project. Since the development is in an Industrial Zone, the project would need a special permit granted to the developers by the Village Board of Trustees.
But to get to that point in the process, the Planning Board must first give a recommendation.
“If the special use permit were to be granted by the village trustees, the planning process doesn’t end; it turns back to the Planning Board to go through a site plan process and additional review by the zoning board for variances,” noted John Rocco, the Planning Board’s chairman.
The skeptical crowd, many of whom read from prepared statements against the project, still questioned whether a luxury complex fits well in the area.
“Our concerns continue to be increased traffic, a substantial environmental impact, increased strain on the infrastructure, irresponsible development in a flood zone, decreased property values, and what we fear the most: setting the precedent for future large scale development,” said Kathleen Biggs, who lives on Mulford Street.
Please check back to find out when the next hearing regarding The Cornerstone’s development.
Scroll down for more rendering and layout photos and prior coverage.